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Research Methodology (Essay Sample)

Research method to be adopted in understanding how public libraries should improve the quality of service they offer source..
Name: University: Course: Tutor: Date: Table of Contents  TOC \o "1-3" \h \z \u  HYPERLINK \l "_Toc371937314" Introduction  PAGEREF _Toc371937314 \h 1  HYPERLINK \l "_Toc371937315" Justification of research design  PAGEREF _Toc371937315 \h 2  HYPERLINK \l "_Toc371937316" Mono or mixed method strategy  PAGEREF _Toc371937316 \h 3  HYPERLINK \l "_Toc371937317" Advantages and drawbacks of qualitative method  PAGEREF _Toc371937317 \h 5  HYPERLINK \l "_Toc371937318" Advantages and drawbacks of qualitative method  PAGEREF _Toc371937318 \h 5  HYPERLINK \l "_Toc371937319" Mixed research design  PAGEREF _Toc371937319 \h 6  HYPERLINK \l "_Toc371937320" Data collection  PAGEREF _Toc371937320 \h 7  HYPERLINK \l "_Toc371937321" Research instrument  PAGEREF _Toc371937321 \h 9  HYPERLINK \l "_Toc371937322" Questionnaire  PAGEREF _Toc371937322 \h 10  HYPERLINK \l "_Toc371937323" Search strategy  PAGEREF _Toc371937323 \h 15  HYPERLINK \l "_Toc371937324" Gantt chart  PAGEREF _Toc371937324 \h 16  HYPERLINK \l "_Toc371937325" Research ethics  PAGEREF _Toc371937325 \h 18  HYPERLINK \l "_Toc371937326" References  PAGEREF _Toc371937326 \h 20  Research Methods Introduction In order to solve a number of problems facing mankind, various approaches have been used. However, one major approach that has proved to be reliable and acceptable is through an extensive research. Ideally research is a step by step or a sytematic way of trying to find a solution or solutions to a given set of issue. The findings of a research study are used to come up with recommendations on how bets to handle political, social, environmental or economic problems facing human beings. In doing so, there are several steps that need to be strictly followed in order to develop reliable, accurate and cceptable solutions. In this section, the paper will critically look at research methodology which is an important section in any research study. Discussion will mainly center on the problem to be solve, the best strategy or design to be adopted for the study, data collection emthod, development of the research instrunment which is survey, search strategy adopted, gantt chart and its importace in research and finally research ethics. Justification of research design One major way through which the public got information both in the past and at present is through libraries. However, with improvements in technology thanks to the introduction of internet, computers, Smartphone, Ipads among others, the platform for information has shifted towards a digital one (Retting, 1993). As result libraries are losing their popularity and their role as intellectual innovative cultural centres has continued to diminish. It is therefore prudent to acknowledge that libraries especially public ones should be rebranded both in the eyes of the community as well as the society. More importantly, they need to use new techniques or approaches in order to realize effective service delivery. Usually it is the business of libraries to retain their users and attracting new ones. There are several different techniques that libraries can employ to improve the quality of service that it offers to it community. However, there is need for the relevant authorities to first establish customer satisfaction level before embarking on any technique to improve their service delivery. In this case, a local council is seeking advice on how to improve their library services as the number of library patrons have been reducing over the years (Whitlatch, 2000; Weddell, 2008). This is the reason behind conducting the research. In order to accomplish this; a number of attributes or factors related to users’ demographic variables, level of satisfaction on different variables will be measured. It is from here that recommendations will be generated to help the local council adopt strategies that will help them improve on their service delivery, retain existing users as well as attracting new one (Shafique & Mahmood, 2007; Saddique, 2006). Mono or mixed method strategy There are two broad categories of research methodology, these are qualitative and quantitative approached. According to Saunders et al. (2007), qualitative research examines a research issue from various viewpoints with the objective of finding out themes and patterns that could help the researcher get a better understanding of the research subject. In that perspective, Saunders et al. (2007) noted that qualitative research is common among researchers who favor interpretive approach since the interpretive approach affords the researcher a thorough understanding of the research subject. Some of the notable aspects of qualitative research are that small sample sizes are used while the data collection process also tends to be time consuming (Ethridge, 1995). The approach “seeks to contextualize a study by immersing the investigator into the research situation and with the research subjects in which hypotheses are developed and data are collected and results tend to be subjective” (Creswell, 2003, P. 23). Usually the design provides a deeper comprehension of how the issue at hand is perceived, however it is does not offer projectable data. What this means is that it is difficult to generalize the findings to the entire population. On the other hand quantitative research is an approach that involves a step by step empirical investigation of social phenomenon through statistical techniques (Tashakkori & Tedllie, 2003; O'Leary, 2004). This approach is projectable since it uses larger sample sizes which can be a representative of the population. The major approaches to collecting quantitative data include surveys, structured interviews and observation, secondary analysis and official statistics, content analysis based on the coding systems, quasi-experiment as well as classic experiments (Creswell, 2012). Mixed research design has been thought of as a research design where multiple approaches are used, for instance combining qualitative and quantitative research design. Ideally it centres on “collecting, analyzing, and mixing both quantitative and qualitative data in a single study or series of studies.” The major reason to employ this design in research is to bring the concept of triangulation where the weaknesses of individual research design that is qualitative and quantitative are offset (Flick, 2011). Table 1 Qualitative and Quantitative research Qualitative Quantitative The aim is to understand and interpret social interactionsMain purpose is to test hypotheses, examine cause and effect as well as make predictionsThe group to be investigated is small and not selected randomlyThe group under investigation is large and section of ample is randomEntails studying a whole or entire targeted populationCertain Variables of interest are studiedData collected is in form of words, images as well as objectsData collected is numericData analysis looks for patterns themes and common featuresData analysis identify statistical relationshipsAdvantages and drawbacks of qualitative method From the definition of quantitative method, it is apparent that data collected must be quantified. It is worth noting that one of the strength of the method is its ability in helping researchers collect large data sets in the most efficient manner. Ideally adopting the approach helps researchers to generate data that are usually compatible or rather can be analyzed using a variety of statistical software (Holloway & Daymon, 2010). In terms of cost effectiveness, it has been argued that quantitative method is indeed less expensive. Currently with the development of internet and computers, online survey development tools has played a major role in helping researchers to just share a link and the responses are provided either in real time or whenever the respondents feel comfortable responding. In real sense, less time and efforts are spent in monitoring the survey till they are completed and sent back. Another advantage associated with quantitative method is the ease at which data can be analyzed and inferences made. Since data can be collected from a large sample size, the findings can be successfully generalized to a large population (Creswell, 2012). However, quantitative method is associated with a number of drawbacks. One of the disadvantages is that the method does not help researchers to have an understanding of why a certain phenomenon is the case. It cannot help scholars to understand the story in hand in details. Additionally due to the fact that the method demands that some questions are closed ended, it restricts or hinders provision of adequate and exhaustive responses (Bryman & Bell, 2011). Advantages and drawbacks of qualitative method Concerning qualitative method, the greatest advantage associated with it is with regards to generating rich data which help researchers in answering the why questions. As noted earlier, qualitative approach calls for an active interaction between the researchers and the study subjects. In that case, the one-on-one experience with the subject provided by qualitative method makes it possible to not only get the verbal responses but also the nonverbal responses. Secondly, it is the best approach in helping investigators to disclose meaning in the issue embedded in the words of the narrative and more importantly, the approach is thought to be rigorous, critical, and logical, making it possible to do the same to the issue at hand (Belk, 2006). The major issues associated with this method concerns time and data management. In order to collect necessary data, researchers usually invest a lot of time in designing methods of data collection as well as conducting interviews. In average, when conducting interviews, it will take at minimum 1 hour to interview one participant. Considering the fact that one might intervi...
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